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LaMarche, Rosseel complete ‘Academy’

Two members of the Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen recently graduated from a course that both describe as highly educational.

Aldermen Tom Rosseel and Dorothy “Dot” LaMarche completed Level Two of the Elected Officials Academy Saturday, June 24, in Nashville. The Academy is a component of City University, a comprehensive municipal training program provided by the University of Tennessee’s Municipal Technical Advisory Service.

“We had all kinds of classes,” LaMarche said. “We had one on parks and recreation, one on planning and zoning, one on the media. I think I took four classes. It’s just a way to keep you informed about things going on in your community and towns across the state similar to Tennessee and ways we can serve our constituents in a much better informed way. We also get some good ideas about changing some of the things we are doing in a better way.”

“This is put on by The University of Tennessee Municipal Technical Advisory Service,” Rosseel said. “They hold these sessions at various times and different locations throughout the year. The Level Two Academy is an opportunity for officials, not necessarily newly-elected officials but elected officials in general, to get a little bit more information and understanding about various aspects of managing a city government. In this particular case, there are ten classes they make available for Level Two. The requirement is that you complete eight of the ten classes. They’re typically two-hour courses and it’s kind of a tutorial kind of thing.”

He said the classes are taught by people who have experience in their respective fields as well as practical knowledge on the subject. Topics covered in the Academy include the following: leadership skills, management, finance, personnel, public works, communications, parks and recreation, police, fire and legal issues. In addition, the Elected Officials Academy also offers networking opportunities with other local officials to share ideas and to gain new insight.

“It’s really an opportunity to see how things should be done,” he said.

Rosseel said there are three levels to the course of instruction. The third level is by invitation only. He and LaMarche said they each are hopeful they would be able to go on to reach the third level.

“I hope I’ll be able to do the level three,” LaMarche said. “Only a small group of people get to do it because it is so intense.”

The Academy is voluntary. Rosseel and LaMarche both chose to participate in the classes.

“I want to go because I’m interested and I care about what’s going on in other towns like Farragut,” LaMarche said.

“I thought it would be a great way of learning more and improve the work I’m doing for the citizens of Farragut,” Rosseel said.


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